2020 Chinese legislative election

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2020 Chinese legislative election

← 2017 16 July 2020 2024 →

All 870 seats in the National Assembly
436 seats needed for a majority
Registered 1,594,286,108

  Majority party Minority party Third party
  Xiao Jie (cropped).jpg Zhao Kezhi (cropped).jpg Dai Bingguo 051208-D-9880W-068.jpg
Leader Gao Weihan Zhang Zhenfang Dou Zhecheng
Party Nationalist Party Democratic Party China Social Democratic Party
Leader since 2014 2016 2018
Last election 418 176 112
Seats won 476 217 70
Seat change 58 41 42
Percentage 54.71% 24.89% 8.02%

  Fourth party Fifth party Sixth party
  Wang Yi - 2017 (36537168903) (cropped).jpg 吳釗燮外交部長.jpg 150x150px
Leader Yang Zongwu Yuan Gong Bayanqolu
Party Chinese Landonist Party Peasant Party New Party
Leader since 2015 2017 2018
Last election 164 None None
Seats won 53 38 16
Seat change 111 38 16
Percentage 6.13% 4.37% 1.88%

Chairman before election

Gao Weihan
KMT

Elected Chairman

Gao Weihan
KMT

The legislative election for the National Assembly of the Republic of China took place on 9 June 2020, simultaneously with the 2020 Chinese presidential election. All 870 seats were contested.

Electoral system

Election day

The original election day was supposed to be 31 January 2020, but it was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and postponed until April initially. It was called off completely for the time being by the government in February. In June 2020, with the improvement of the public health situation the government decided to hold the election the following month, setting it for 16 July.

Background

The Nationalist Party of China (KMT) has dominated the Qing parliament continuously since the 1997 election, and for much of China's history in the post-Great War I era either the Royalists or the Nationalists won the majority of seats. During the Hongxian era it has been the ruling party. During the 2010s, increasing opposition to the authoritarian rule of the Hongxian Emperor, who has gradually increased the power of the Chinese monarchy since he came to power in 1996. He has purged the government of the more democratic politicians and former Xuantong era bureaucrats who opposed absolutism, filling the bureaucracy with his loyalists. More campaigning took place by Progressive Party of China, the main liberal-democratic opposition party, which favors a more limited constitutional monarchy like the United Kingdom and has opposed many of the Hongxian era reforms. In the 2017 election the Progressive Party had its best result since the Xuantong era, winning 98 seats, though the Nationalists gained the plurality and formed a coalition with the Royalists.

On 16 January 2020, the Emperor announced new constitutional changes in China, which caused the resignation of Prime Minister Yang Wenli in disagreement over some of the proposed changes. The central leadership of the Nationalist Party headed by Gao Weihan, the Chairman of the National Assembly, supported the Emperor's constitutional initiative. To solidify his control over the lower house of parliament for enacting the proposed constitutional reforms, on 18 January the Hongxian Emperor called for an early election on 31 January 2020. The opposition, led by the Progressive Party head Zhang Zhenfang, condemned the move as an attempt to return absolute monarchy in China. He also called it an "insult to the legacy of Sun Yat-sen." In his annual speech on 23 January, the Emperor said it was necessary to strengthen the government and guarantee the stability of China in the long term, a view shared by most of the Nationalist leadership.

On 27 January 2020, due to the COVID-19 outbreak that first began in December 2019 and spread rapidly in the central Chinese city of Wuhan as well as the rest of Hubei province, the Emperor announced the Election Day would be moved from 31 January to an unspecified future date. As Hubei and several cities were placed on lock down by the Chinese authorities to contain the virus, the situation would disrupt voting if it went ahead on that date. By mid-February, the virus spread to other provinces of China and more than 75,000 infections were confirmed by the Qing government as of 19 February 2020. The government decided the election would be postponed for at least one or two months as the containment efforts continued and travel restrictions within China were imposed. Over the next two months the virus continued to spread to every province, with a total lockdown imposed by the Imperial Government until the situation improved in May and June 2020.

The election was delayed, but the handling of the pandemic by the Qing court caused criticism by the opposition. However, the increased geopolitical pressure against China by the Anglo-American countries and the European Community in response to the COVID-19 pandemic caused a rally around the flag effect, a consolidation in support for the Nationalists.

Parties

Since 2017 only four parties have seats in the National Assembly, but the Imperial Ministry of Justice registered a total of nine parties to take part in the 2020 legislative election with the emergence of several new parties over the past few years. To register a party for a National Assembly election must have seats in a provincial assembly or collect at least 900,000 signatures, and as of 18 January 2020 five parties met these requirements.

Party General seats Party list Total
Nationalist Party 203 215 418
Progressive Party 98 78 176
Royalist Party 17 147 164
China Social Democratic Party 2 110 112
Green Party 0
Peasant Party 0
New Party 0
Chinese Landonist Party 0
Alliance for Change 0

Opinion polling

Date Poll source KMT RP PP CSDP Greens Peasant NP CCP AC Undecided
1–3 July 2020 Reference News 51% 5% 18% 12% 2% 5% 4% 2% 1%
28–30 June 2020 Xinhua 49% 8% 16% 13% <1% 2% 3% 2% 1% 3%
22–24 June 2020 South China Morning Post 50% 6% 16% 15% <1% 8% 5% <1% <1%
9–12 June 2020 China Daily 55% 7% 14% 13% <1% 5% 3% <1% <1% 3%
4–7 May 2020 Xinhua 57% 9% 16% 11% <1% 2% 3% <1% <1%
29–31 March 2020 China Daily 53% 6% 22% 9% 1% 4% 3% 1% 1%
7–10 March 2020 Reference News 54% 7% 18% 13% <1% 2% 4% 2% <1%
10–12 April 2020 The Economic Observer 48% 5% 21% 16% 3% 2% 5%
13–16 February 2020 Xinhua 52% 8% 15% 14% 1% 5% 4% 1%
28–30 January 2020 Guangzhou Daily 47% 11% 20% 19% 3%
19–21 January 2020 China Daily 50% 8% 15% 17% 2% <1% <1% 7%
5–8 January 2020 Xinhua 55% 4% 14% 13% <1% 3% 3% 2% 2% 4%
30–31 December 2019 The Economic Observer 52% 7% 16% 15% 6% 3% 1%
18–20 December 2019 Xinhua 51% 9% 12% 13% 1% 5% 2% 2% 1% 4%

Results

Party Votes Seats
Nationalist Party
54.71%
476 / 870 (55%)

Aftermath

Notes